It’s an age-old debate. There’s a great deal that we learn during our time in education that will never be of much use as adults. For example, algebra isn’t needed for most jobs. And understanding how oxbow lakes are formed might be important for some people – but it’s hardly essential knowledge.
On the other hand, understanding how the world of money works is very relevant to us all. Some are lucky enough to have our parents teach the basics, others may have picked this education up for themselves. But for most students, they’re pretty much left to their own devices.
That’s because only 17 states insist on students receiving any education in personal finances – a situation that some people believe should change.
Of course, others feel that money management should have no place in education and that young adults should be left to pick up the skills as they move through life. But few could deny that by the time young people reach college, they already need to be at least a little financially savvy.
After all, with most students facing college loan fees of over $28,000 and rising after they graduate, they need to have at least some understanding of how to manage and repay this debt.
But alongside this, there are countless other reasons young people need to understand how the world of money works as soon as is possible. Beyond being able to budget for everyday needs, the more sophisticated the grasp a person has of finance, the more opportunities they may have.
This can range from being able to work out the best loan and mortgage deals to understanding financial investment and trading opportunities found at brokers like INFINOX fx trading, as just one example.
Let’s look at currency – we are all used to converting our money into a different currency when traveling abroad, but for some, this is a way of trading to make a profit. This can involve speculating on the future of exchange rates between different pairs of currencies.
Sites make this as simple with demo platforms to practice on, as well as a social community to share tips and advice. Either way, a certain level of financial acumen is very useful to have. Considering the risks involved when investing or trading, tools such as this help beginners consider the risks involved, as no profit is ever guaranteed.
And, while know-how in the here and now is important for everyone, it could be even more vital to plan for the future, no matter how distant it may seem. But the fact of the matter is that life expectancy is gradually increasing, and that’s going to mean longer retirements for many people.
Without laying down solid financial plans for how to pay for what may become several decades of not working, it could mean the difference between a happy or impoverished retirement.
Certainly, there are several financial literacy teaching aids available for students– but the real hurdle is generating enough interest to get them to use them. Far better, surely, to make financial education mandatory nationwide.
The glimmer of hope is that in a recent survey, 77% of adult respondents felt politicians should press for financial education in schools. Hopefully, those in power will soon note this and take steps to make it happen.